Loose-fill insulating materials of rock wool, fiber glass or cellulose are commonly used for insulating attics. Vermiculite is not currently used for homes, but it may be found in older homes. It is best to install these materials with a plywood rake attached to a rake handle, making spreading much easier. To make this type of rake, cut a scrap piece of plywood to the length of the space between the joists plus 4′ (see image below). The extra 4′ allows for an overhang on the joists.
Next decide how deep you plan to install the loose-fill material. For example, suppose you are planning to lay the loose-fill material to a depth of 3′ between the attic joists (see image above). Measure the depth in the space you plan to fill then saw the plywood rake as illustrated in this image. The rake should ride on the joist on either side and level the material off evenly to a depth of 3′. Attach a handle, making a handy tool that will save you hours of backbreaking labor and enable you to rake the material easily and evenly into otherwise unreachable corners (see image).
For home improvement advice, visit JS West Lumber & Ace Hardware Sonora, Ca. or visit www.acehardware.com and click on the Answers@Ace icon. Answers@Ace is an online resource with information for do-it-yourselfers about hardware and home improvement projects. The Everyday Projects section has pictures and detailed, step-by-step instructions for this and many more home improvement projects.
To speak to an Ace Hardware advisor in Sonora call: 209 532 7446.